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Elisabeth Elliot's Strong Views Were Not About Women Only

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Elisabeth Elliot's Strong Views Were Not About Women Only

Swimming against the stream is always hard. An interview with Elisabeth Elliot.

This interview originally appeared in the October 6, 1978, issue of Christianity Today. It was posted June 15, 2015, to commemorate the death of Elisabeth Elliot.

Elisabeth Elliot is a writer who lives in Hamilton, Massachusetts. She is adjunct professor at Gordon-Conwell seminary, South Hamilton, Massachusetts.

The following is a condensation of a lengthy discussion Elisabeth Elliot had with Harold Lindsell and Harold Myra.

You have been fiercely attacked by women who have not agreed with some of your views, such as the subordination of wife to husband. How has that affected you?

Whenever I’m attacked I am emotionally affected. I’m not at all thick-skinned. However, I try not to allow people’s opinions to dictate my behavior or color my doctrine. Instead I try to get my beliefs directly from the Bible. And if I feel that what I believe is biblical, I can’t pay a lot of attention to people’s feelings.

Are you saying then that in the women’s liberation controversy you are convinced that you speak from a strictly biblical perspective?

Yes, I am. I often refer to Paul’s exhortation in Romans 12, which says don’t let the world squeeze you into its mold, but let God remold your mind from within.

Do you think that the evangelical church today is being molded by the world rather than by Scripture?

I wouldn’t limit it to our day. The fact that Paul wrote Romans 12 indicates that it has always been a difficulty and something to fight against. Swimming against the stream is always hard and today’s mass media makes it even more difficult.

Describe your daily schedule.

I like monotony and routine, like C. S. Lewis. Usually I read my Bible and pray before breakfast and do some light cleaning afterward. By 8:00 I’m almost always at my desk and stay until noon. This doesn’t mean I write for four hours. If I can’t concentrate on writing, I might look out the window, sharpen pencils, or clean typewriter keys. If inspiration should strike, I will be at my desk instead of somewhere else.

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